Amos B. Smith III
Amos B. Smith, III (born August 26, 1944) received his early education in Lewisburg, PA. In 1966 he was awarded Bucknell University's first combined four-year B.S.-M.S. degree in Chemistry. After a year in medical school (University of Pennsylvania), he earned his Ph.D. degree (1972) and completed a year as a Research Associate at Rockefeller University. In 1973, he joined the Department of Chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania; currently, he is the Rhodes-Thompson Professor of Chemistry, a Member of the Monell Chemical Senses Center, the Associate Director of the Penn Center for Molecular Discovery (PCMD), and from 1976-2000, he was a Member of the Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Matter (LRSM). In addition, he is an Honorary Member and a Visiting Director at the Kitasato Institute (Tokyo, Japan). From 1988 to 1996 he served as Chairman of the Department of Chemistry. In 1998 he became the first Editor-in-Chief of the new American Chemical Society journal, Organic Letters.
Smith's research interests encompass three diverse areas: natural product synthesis, bioorganic chemistry and materials science. To date more than 90 architecturally complex natural products have been prepared in his Laboratory. In addition, Smith, in collaboration with Ralph Hirschmann, has achieved the design and synthesis of non-peptide peptidomimetics of neuropeptideic hormone/transmitters and protease enzyme inhibitors and, also with Stephen Benkovic (Penn State), haptens for the production of catalytic antibodies capable of peptide bond formation. At Monell, in collaboration with Peter Jurs (Penn State), he pioneered the use of computerized pattern recognition techniques for the analysis of primate chemical communication. Collaborative programs at the LRSM include the chemistry and physics of novel liquid crystals and the fullerenes.
Smith has been a Visiting Professor at Columbia, Cambridge (UK) and Auckland (NZ) Universities. Editorial Board memberships include the Journal of the American Chemical Society (1988-1993), the Journal of Organic Chemistry (1982-1986, 1994-), Accounts of Chemical Research (2002-), Journal of the Chemical Society, Perkin Transactions I (1992-2001), Organic Reactions (1987-), Organic Synthesis (1990-1998), Fullerene Science and Technology (1993-1996), Synlett (1995-1998), Tetrahedron Publications (1996-), Journal of Antibiotics (1999-) and Chemical & Pharmaceutical Bulletin (2000-) and Regional Editor of Fullerene Science and Technology (1997-2001). He has also served on the NIH Medicinal Chemistry A Study Section as Member (1993-1987 and 1995-1998) and as Chair (1997-1999), and on the Executive Committee of the Organic Division of the ACS, as Chair-Elect, Chair, and Past-Chair (1995-1997). Currently, he is a Member of the Board of Directors of both Organic Reactions (1995-) and Organic Syntheses (2002-). To date, Smith has co-authored over 600 publications and has delivered over 600 invited lectures, including plenary lectures at the National Organic Chemistry Symposium (1983, 1993), numerous Gordon Research Conferences, the Royal Society Christmas Lectures (Edinburgh, Scotland and Cardiff, Wales), the 3éme Cycle en Chimie (French Speaking Universities in Switzerland), the W. S. Johnson Symposium (Stanford University), the Leermakers Symposium, the Stork Lectureship (Columbia University), the Nelson J. Leonard Lectureship (University of Illinois) and the Bristol-Myers Squibb Lectureship (Harvard). His honors and awards include the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher Scholar Award (1978), the NIH Career Development Award (1980), the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship (1985), The Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellowship (1986), the Philadelphia Section Award of the ACS (1986), the Kitasato Institute Medal (1990), the first Philadelphia Organic Chemist's Club Award (1990), the Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award (1991), the Honor Scroll Award-American Institute of Chemists (1991), the Alexander von Humboldt Research Award for Senior U.S. Scientists (1992), the Bucknell University Alumni Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement (1993), the ACS Ernest Guenther Award (1993), the University of Oregon Creativity Award (1997), the ACS Award for Creativity in Organic Chemistry (1997), Honorary Membership in the Pharmaceutical Society of Japan (1999), Honorary Member, Kitasato Institute (2001), Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science (2002), the Centenary Medal, Royal Society of Chemistry, London, UK (2002), the 2003 Yamada Prize (Tokyo, Japan), the First Provost's Award for Teaching and Mentoring of Ph.D. Students (University of Pennsylvania, 2004), the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon from the Government of Japan (2004), Fellow, American Academiy of the Arts and Sciences (2006), Member, ESPCI International Scientific Council, Paris, France (2007), and the Royal Society of Chemistry Simonsen Medal, UK (2008), Inaugural Fellow, American Chemical Society (2009) and DSc (honoris causa), Queens University, Belfast, Northern Ireland (2009) and Wilsmore Professorship, Melbourne University, Melbourne, Australia (2011).